Propose a Faculty-Led Program

Thank you for your interest in leading a study abroad program for UNC Charlotte students! The Office of Education Abroad (OEA) is excited to begin working with you in developing a high quality academic international experience for our students.

Features of a Faculty-Led Study Abroad Program

  • Usually offered during academic breaks (e.g. spring break or summer)
  • Embedded programs combining an on-campus course with learning abroad (e.g. spring break), or freestanding programs taught entirely abroad with some pre-departure on-campus meetings (e.g. summer)
  • Designed around a particular theme or topic
  • Discipline-specific or interdisciplinary
  • Credit amount varies (usually 3-6 credits)
  • Prerequisites are possible, but not required
  • Usually fulfill general education requirements and/or major/minor requirements
  • Typical minimum enrollment of 10 students 
  • Require at least a 2.0 GPA
  • Can only be open to UNC Charlotte students (may allow non-UNC Charlotte students for summer programs only)
  • Classroom instruction, experiential learning, or hybrid instruction 
  • Typically incorporates excursions, site visits, field assignments, cultural activities, discussion, reflection, and free time

When Creating a Proposal, Consider: 

  • What is the academic content of the course and how does it connect to the local cultural and context?
    • Why is this location relevant to the subject matter?
    • Why is the location you have chosen significant to the development of the program's focus or theme?
    • How will you utilize the location (e.g., excursions, tours, guest lectures, local resources, etc.) to illuminate this theme?
  • How will students' performance be assessed?
  • How will you promote your program for its intended target audience?
  • Relevance to UNC Charlotte students and student interest
  • Your knowledge of academic content and location
  • Your experience leading student groups
  • Program features and structure (e.g., service-learning component, field research, language study, etc.)


Program locations are finalized in consultation with the Office of Education Abroad. Factors taken into consideration are availability of affiliated partners that can provide strong on-site support, appeal to students, relevance to program topic, safety, and cost.

Program Development Timeline

We urge you to consult with our office as soon as you begin thinking about developing a new program. Development of a program proposal takes generally 2-4 months. And then it takes an additional 10-12 months to implement and run the program. Please use the resources in this section of our website to navigate the various stages of the program development and proposal process.

Proposal Deadlines


New Programs

Existing Programs

Spring/Spring Break

June 1

June 15


July 1

July 15

Fall/Fall Break December 1 December 15

Program Types

Credit Bearing Programs

Embedded Programs (i.e. spring or fall break)

Embedded programs incoporate a study abroad experience as a component of an on campus UNC Charlotte course(s) taught during the Fall or Spring semester. Embedded programs offer students a unique study abroad opportunity to incorporate coursework on campus during the fall or spring term with an international experience during a term recess. In this program model, students are enrolled in a semester length course and go abroad for a short period of time over a university break. The semester course is often counted towards the faculty member’s teaching load. However, this should be confirmed with the faculty member’s academic department or college. Students participating in embedded programs pay regular tuition costs for the course based on their residency status, in addition to the program fee paid to the Office of Education Abroad. 

Freestanding (i.e. summer)

A Freestanding program is still a UNC Charlotte-operated faculty-led program that offers UNC Charlotte credit. Freestanding simply means that the study abroad program is not a component of an on-campus semester course the way an embedded program is; the program's course content is delivered almost entirely on-site abroad (there may also be a few class meetings or assignments before and/or after departure abroad). Participants are registered in a Foreign Studies placeholder credit to maintain enrollment before departure abroad, and the credit for which the program is offered appears on participants' transcripts after the study abroad program ends and grades are submitted.

Most freestanding programs run during the summer during the Summer I or II terms, or span both terms, and can vary in length from 2-8 weeks. Shorter program lengths may be considered. The dates of the program are at the discretion of the faculty member. Eligible faculty members (details in the program proposal) will receive a stipend for leading a summer study abroad program. Students participating in summer programs are enrolled in tuition-waived courses and pay a program fee to the Office of Education Abroad. In-state and out-of-state students pay the same program fee.

Existing vs. New Programs

  • Existing programs are those that have run previously and no major changes are expected to be implemented into the program for the next year.
  • New programs are those that are being developed from scratch and have never run at UNC Charlotte before. 

Changes to Existing Programs

If your program has changed drastically from the time it last ran we ask that you complete the New Program Proposal. Changes that may require a new proposal include:

  • Complete change in location 
  • Changes in coursework offered
  • Change in program term (e.g. move from spring break to summer)
  • Change of primary Faculty Director 

Program Proposal Application

Once you have decided when you would like to offer your program it is time to begin the Program Proposal Online Process. Please review the information available on our website which details the many steps to creating a program proposal prior to beginning the proposal.

Contact Us

Short Term Programs Team
CHHS 256